CALGARY- “When I came out as transgender everyone supported me. I was supported by family, friends and school. But it was still hell for me.” says Ace Peace, a 16 year old transgender boy who is featured in a social media campaign to raise support for the Metta Clinic. “I was watching my body change in ways I didn’t want to see it change. I felt like it was betraying me.”

This is the terrifying truth facing countless transgender and gender diverse youth. The Metta Clinic is for many of them the only chance to avoid a puberty they were never meant to go through. It is Alberta’s only clinic providing comprehensive care for transgender youth and it is desperately under-funded.

“Right now, the clinic only operates a single day per month. That’s less than two weeks a year. It’s just not good enough.” says Amelia Marie Newbert, President of Skipping Stone Foundation, the organization behind the campaign. “We’ve heard a lot from the government that there is not clearly established need for the clinic. Since it’s creation in 2014, the wait list has grown from 9 months to almost 3 years. That is clearly established need.”    

Throughout the month of February, the foundation will be releasing a video per week via their website and social media channels. These videos contain vulnerable and compelling first hand experiences from transgender youth and their families. They highlight the struggles they experienced while waiting for access to care. They also highlight the significant and positive impact the Metta Clinic has on their lives.

The first video in this campaign launches from the project section of our webpage.

“I’ve witnessed firsthand the amazing things that happen when children are supported,” said Lindsay Peace, Vice-President of Skipping Stone and Ace’s mother “and that’s what I want to see for all these kids. I know the power a community has when it comes together to support itself. It brings out the best in people and we intend to be a catalyst for that change.”

With even more initiatives planned for release this spring and summer, Skipping Stone is asking for support in spreading its message.